Rock out like a student, but drink out like an adult

The Sinclair does double duty as both an awesome bar and an awesome music venue.
The Sinclair does double duty as both an awesome bar and an awesome music venue.

If you’re looking for great music venues and cocktail bars, we’ve got lots of them here in Boston. If you’re looking for awful ones, we’ve got plenty of those too! What we don’t have, unfortunately, are many places that combine the two.

While we can appreciate the merits of a tall boy or a plastic cup of mass market whiskey at a show as much as the next guy (provided the next guy has terrible taste), we sometimes prefer to stop off for a proper drink before a night spent slamming back the cheap stuff at a show.

Luckily, most of the venues around town where we’d see a band just happen to be within stumbling distance of some of the best bars around town where we’d go for a real, adult cocktail. While regular readers of this column will already know about most of these spots, consider this a handy guide to where to grab a pre-show cocktail for the new influx of students in the city who don’t know any better yet — and should.

The Middle East or T.T. the Bear’s Place | Central Square

While these are two iconic Central Square music venues who bring in great musical talent, you wouldn’t want to stray too far outside of the one and one or beer format here, mostly because the bartender will look at you like you’re a jerk. On the other hand, at the nearby Brick + Mortar, you can let your taste palate run wild with some of the city’s best bartenders and a spirits selection that goes into the deep cuts. You can order all of the mezcal, bitters, and digestif cocktails you want, or you could just do the Crush on a Stripper: four shots (they change frequently) for just $20 — you are still going to a show after all, let’s not get too fancy. Better still, if your rocker friend isn’t ready for a mezcal or amaro cocktail, a shot and a Bud will only cost you nine bucks.

Royale | Theatre District

Big nightclub, big bands, big prices for crappy drinks. Pretty standard. Make sure you get a nice solid foundation going before you head in by stopping off at Shojo around the corner in Chinatown. They’re literally the best (albeit only) craft cocktail bar in the hood, but they’d be one of the best in any area. Try the Ozawa’s Kiss made with Hakushu 12 year Japanese whiskey, Benedictine, yellow Chartreuse and bitters.

Great Scott or Brighton Music Hall | Allston

Two of the best spots to see touring indie bands and locals on the way up, and to drink Narragansetts and… that’s about it. Allston is surprisingly lacking in cocktail bars (too many cheap kids), but a little walk up the road toward Lone Star and Deep Ellum will find you in the heart of craft cocktail and beer territory. Try the Hombre Sin Nombre, made with blanco tequila, Peychaud’s bitters, mole bitters, agave and a Chartreuse rinse.

The bartenders at Lone Star know their way around a good tequila.
The bartenders at Lone Star know their way around a good tequila.

Radio | Somerville

Another good spot for checking out Boston’s homegrown talent, but you’ll be hard pressed to find an interesting cocktail. Around the corner in Union Square, however, you can choose from either Back Bar or The Independent, both of whom are rock stars in their own right when it comes to mixing drinks. If you’re at the Independent, go for the Queen Charlotte, made with gin, Punt e Mes, Creme de Violette and meyer lemmon bitters.

The Sinclair | Harvard Square

Success! You’ve found the one venue/bar where you can both see a quality band and get a quality drink. Order the Word of Mouth, made with Old Monk 7 year rum, amontillado sherry, sweet vermouth and Turkish sumac bitter molasses.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.